7: Special Creations
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(End of Book)
Chapter Eight: Squads
Charge!
Just like a BrikWars player, an Officer's job is to send as many of his minifigs as possible to a horrifying yet entertaining death. At the same time, he's always aware that he won't get any medals for getting killed himself!

“None of us is as dumb as all of us."
- Despair Incorporated, "Meetings"

Four soldiers working separately can complete four soldier-sized tasks, but combine those troops together into a finely-tuned combat machine, and they become something greater: a Squad. And Squads can accomplish the big missions that individual soldiers can only dream of.

Of course, many other types of units can be grouped into Squads besides just the soldiers - Squads of horsemen or assault helicopters operate by the same rules. A Squad is much simpler to handle if it's composed of identical or similar units (a group of knights all on horseback or a squadron of starfighers), but heterogeneous Squads are just as common (a catapult and its defending crew or a necromancer and his summoned undead).

Squad Appreciation
The Shadowhawk Army
A turn spent trying to run this many units individually could literally take hours. Broken into Squads, the battle will still take awhile, but there's a much greater chance of players reaching the second turn.
Elements shown: LEGO, Mega Bloks, Little Armory
Using Squads offers a number of advantages over handling units individually.

Efficiency
Efficiency is the number one reason to form a Squad. BrikWars games take long enough as it is; there's no need to slow things down further by handling troops separately when you can run big groups of them at once.

Combined Firepower
There's only so much damage an individual trooper can do, and many targets have the kind of Armor that's beyond his ability to penetrate. By combining forces with a bunch of his buddies, he can increase his firepower significantly.

Giant Attack Rolls
If you have a pile of identical troops making identical attacks with identical weapons, you can roll all their Attack and Damage Rolls together in giant handfuls of dice. The intimidation factor alone is extremely satisfying.

Safety in Numbers
It's a lot easier to kill one guy than to kill a whole bunch of guys watching each other's backs. Because incoming attacks are spread among the Squad members, individual kills are less likely, and low-ranking soldiers make great meat shields for more important units.

Hand-to-Hand Scariness
If you hit a guy and he hits you back, you're in a fair fight. If you hit a guy and a dozen guys hit you back, it might be time to re-think your tactics. Strength in numbers makes a big difference in Close Combat.

Flexibility
Squads can divide and re-form to adapt to any condition - two medium Squads giving each other cover can suddenly combine into one big Squad to take down a heavy target or break into a dozen indivudal troops to confuse pursuit.



8.1: The Squad Plate

Full metal redcoats
Tired of flintlock muskets, this squad of redcoats can't wait to give the rebel colonists a taste of their new submachineguns.
Elements shown: LEGO, Best Lock


The difference between a random group of soldiers and a Squad is organization, and the expression of that organization is the Squad's Formation. Even if the units' arrangement appears to be random, every man in the Squad knows the location and condition of every one of his Squaddie comrades, and they coordinate their efforts to achieve the Squad’s mutual goal.

Formations have three important features: the Squad Plate on which the units are placed, the Standard they rally around, and the arrangement of the units themselves. The Squad Plate is used to determine what spaces they can move through and their physical presence when they're targeted by Ranged Attacks or engaging in Close Combat. The Standard is used as the measuring point for calculating movement distances and range away from the Squad. Finally, the arrangement of the units themselves determines the distribution of location-based damage from Explosions or Charge attacks.


Squad Plates
The constructible nature of brick warriors makes them easy to group into quick formations – just take all the Squad members and stick them to a shared baseplate.

The Squad Plate, in effect, combines a number of lesser units into a single super-unit. Instead of having to move Squad members around individually, you can now pick up the Squad Plate and move them all at once. Instead of running individual Squaddies' Attacks, a Squad is set up to roll them all together as Combined Attacks (5.1: Making Attacks). Instead of sending Squad members up to use objects individually, the Squad touches its Squad Plate to an object and all the Squaddies are considered to have access to it at once.

The Squad Plate should be an appropriate size for the Squad. As a very general rule of thumb, there should be a 2x4-stud area for each minifig on foot, for example, or 4x8 for each rider on horseback. These numbers can be fudged quite a bit, however, depending on the sizes of available plates in the players’ collections, and whether the troops need to be arranged in some specific formation. Munchkin players will try to pack their troops on the smallest baseplates they can get away with, but a couple of friendly group beatings from the other players should help deter this kind of funny business.


The Standard
Poo on a Stik
Holy icons make good standards for especially religious Squads, as shown by these dung-worshipping Dungan Jaw-Jaws and their sacred Poo-On-A-Stik.
Elements shown: LEGO
When measuring distances away from a Squad, players might try estimating an arbitrary point towards the middle of the Squad from which to measure, but the imprecision of this method will tend to cause disagreements. The better method is to give the Squad a Standard from which all range and movement distances are measured. (When measuring to a Squad, players can use whichever portion of the Squad Plate, Squad members, or Standard that's closest.)

Banners and flags are the most typical Standards, but any special decoration or equipment item can be used if it's appropriate to the battle – a modern police Squad might be organized around whoever’s holding the communications radio; a Squad of Civil War cavalry might organize around whoever’s blowing the bugle. For quickly-improvised Squads, the Standard might be defined as simply as "the guy standing in the middle." As long as all players are clear about which object represents the Standard for each Squad, almost any item can be used.

If an object is used as a Standard then it should ideally be carried by or mounted on one of the units. If that's too impractical, then the object can simply be attached directly to the Squad Plate. The only restrictions are that the Standard must be positioned near the center of the Squad, and that players can’t cheat and move it around to improve their measurement results later on.

A Standard doesn’t necessarily have any “existence” as an in-game object if it's not convenient. Its main purpose is to act as a navigational symbol for the players rather than as a physical equipment item for a unit (although a Standard may be mounted on a "real" equipment item, such as a pennant that’s attached to a knight’s lance). A soldier holding a banner in one hand may still use a Two-Handed Weapon held in the other hand as if he weren't holding the banner, for instance.

Standards don’t cost any CP, and players may choose to add or remove Standards from the battle at will as new Squads form and old Squads dissolve. In general, minifigs should not be allowed to use a “non-existing” Standard as a weapon or tool (especially a Standard that “magically appeared” in the middle of battle) unless they’re using it to do something funny enough that the other players are laughing too hard to object.


The Units
Taking no chances
The ambassador from Reptilia keeps his personal medik close at hand, and puts as many armored bodies as possible between himself and potential danger.
Elements shown: LEGO, Little Armory
For most purposes, how a player decides to arrange the units on a Squad Plate is an aesthetic decision more than anything else. Movement and weapon ranges are based solely on the location of the Standard, and in most cases Damage is distributed evenly among the Squad members regardless of their placement. Although the plastic figures appear to remain in static positions on the plastic baseplate, in game terms they might potentially be at all positions on the baseplate at once, like the tactical equivalent of quantum particles.

Regardless, for the sake of attractive battle scenes, the units should be arranged in such a fashion that they could believably make their attacks. A heavy cavalry charge works a lot better when the horses run side-by-side than in a single-file line, and soldiers packed together like sardines are going to have a hard time swinging poleaxes or rifles around.

While unit positions are ignored for most normal types of Damage, it becomes important again in cases where a Squad is damaged by location-specific effects. In some cases this will be determined by where the Squad is standing when the effect is set off, such as when a booby trap is activated or when they are struck by an unexpected freight train. In other cases an attack may be distributed among the Squad members as usual, but have secondary location-specific effects - a bazooka blast could be distributed to any member of the Squad, for instance, but the Explosion damage that follows is then treated as a location-based effect centered on that unit.



8.2: Forming Up

At the beginning of a battle, players can group their units into Squads however they like, assigning Squad Plates and Formations according to whim. Once the battle is underway, the soldiers have a lot more on their minds, and they aren’t always so quick to reorganize on the fly.


Changing Formation
“The ultimate in disposing one's troops is to be without ascertainable shape. Then the most penetrating spies cannot pry in nor can the wise lay plans against you.”
- Sun Tzu

As long as a player doesn’t have to add a new Squad Plate to the field, or change the size of an existing one, most simple types of reorganization have no special cost. Leaving a Squad costs no penalty to a unit or to the rest of the Squad; the unit simply declares itself independent and walks off the Squad Plate. Rearranging the units already on the Squad Plate is also free, unless a player is trying to abuse this ability to cheat a couple of free extra movement inches for one or more of the units. When in doubt, you can force the offending unit to pay the extra inches for moving across the Plate, but in most cases there’s no reason to bother.

If units reorganize in a way that requires a player to set up a new Squad Plate or resize an old one, or if new units join up with an already-existing Squad, then things get more complicated. Any time a unit is placed onto a new or different Squad Plate, it must Form Up with the new Squad, which counts as an Action for the turn. If the unit doesn't have an Action to spend then he can't Form Up, regardless of how tempting the invitation may be. If he is able to Form Up, because it costs him his Action, the unit is prevented from participating in any Action the Squad might take later in that turn. (But see The Officer, below, for ways to avoid the Action cost of Forming Up.)

Example: Joining Forces
Example: Throwing on blue livery and running around with swords and shields doesn't appeal to just anyone, so when these swordfighting enthusiasts encounter like-minded individuals, they're eager to join together and adopt a silly group name.

In this case, a blue-shirted swordsman encounters two similarly dressed Squads of two swordsmen apiece. The Squad Plate of the closer group is rather optimistically sized, large enough to support all five swordsmen, so they elect to all pile on board and name themselves Shadowhawks.

The lone swordsman and the two swordsmen from the smaller Squad Plate spend their Actions to join the larger plate. For the two swordsmen already on the Squad Plate, there's no cost to remain there as the other three join. If the newly-reformed Squad takes an Action this turn, only those two swordsmen will be able to participate; the three that joined during the turn have already spent their Actions.
Shadowhawks unite!
An individual and two small Squads of swordsmen join together to form a larger Squad.
Elements shown: LEGO
Example: Splitting Up
Example: A squad of Coke-loving Shadowhawks is horrified to discover that two of their brothers-in-arms are secretly Pepsi drinkers. Unable to resolve their differences, they are forced to go their separate ways.

Two of the swordsmen split off from the original Squad of seven in disgrace. Forming their new smaller Squad of two costs them their action for the turn. The five swordsmen remaining in the orginal Squad continue using the original, suddenly-roomier Squad Plate, so they retain their Actions and may use them to sneak-attack the departing group from behind.
A nasty breakup
A Squad of seven swordsmen splits into Squads of two and five.
Elements shown: LEGO
Example: Changing Formation
Example: After losing a few members to meddling girlfriends, these four remaining swordsmen no longer need such a large Squad Plate. They tighten up their Formation to present a smaller target against further girl interference.

Changing Formation doesn't carry any cost on its own if the Squad Plate remains the same, but in this case, because of the switch from one Squad Plate to another, the Squad must Form Up again and spend its Action to change to the new, smaller plate.
A nasty breakup
A Squad of four swordsmen tightens formation.
Elements shown: LEGO

There are many cases in which a unit might leave a Squad and later rejoin it in the same turn (most often when a Squad breaks formation to navigate a difficult obstacle and re-Forms when it reaches the other side). However, the opposite is not allowed: units joining a Squad are not allowed to leave again until the following turn. Such tactless behavior would be the Squad equivalent of a one night stand, and no Squaddie would dream of treating his mates with such disrespect. (Especially if they're armed.)

Example: Breaking Formation
Example: The brotherhood of this Squad is too strong to be disrupted by women or cola selection, but the narrow passages of this rocky terrain will require them to break formation if they hope to continue forward.

Because their Squad Plate is too wide to fit through the narrow archway, the soliders must break up and move through individually before spending their Actions to re-Form on the other side.

The player doesn't have to actually separate the minifigs to act out their individual trips in most cases, unless for some reason the soldiers are interrupted in mid-transit. He can usually just pick up the Squad Plate from one side of the obstruction and deposit it on the other, spending the Action and leaving the breaking and reforming implied.
A narrow pass
A large Squad must squeeze to fit through a tight arch.
Elements shown: LEGO

The Officer
Losing Actions every time a Squad changes formation is inconvenient at best. Fortunately, new squaddies can get organized and sent into fresh Action immediately if they just have a little trained leadership.

Officer Stat Card
(Download the Officer card)

“A team effort is a lot of people doing what I say.”
- Michael Winner

While not Heroes in their own right, there are certain minifigs that are possessed of a stubborn mindset that leads them to push themselves and their comrades harder than most would find reasonable. While this results in abilities slightly improved from those of their peers, it is their special pigheadedness rather than any actual skill that qualifies these minifigs for Officer training.

In most regards, an Officer is nothing more than a slightly-improved Minifig with a couple extra decorations. He has a Skill of 1d8 (or 1d6+1 for players without d8s), a Move of 6”, and Armor of 1d10. His one unique advantage is his Leadership training, which allows him to organize new Squads or reorganize existing ones and put them into immediate Action. Any time an Officer is involved with creating, reorganizing, joining, or splitting a Squad, the usual Action cost for Forming Up is cancelled. Units may Form Up and immediately join in with the Squad’s Action for the turn. Even units who've already spent their Action may still Form Up for free.

Squads that expect to reorganize frequently in response to enemy tactics should always start with at least one Officer. Squads lacking Officers will want to avoid reorganizing as much as possible, to avoid the Action cost involved.

Example: Splitting Up
Example: As a parting gift, the benefits of an Officer's Leadership even extend to groups of units breaking off from his Squad to form new ones. In the example shown, a large Squad of an Officer and seven swordsmen break into three smaller Squads. All three of the new Squads have switched to smaller baseplates, but thanks to the residual effects of the Officer's Leadership, none of the three have to spend their Actions to do so.
A mutual breakup
An Officer directs his Squad to split up and search for clues.
Elements shown: LEGO, Mega Bloks, Little Armory



8.3: Squad Movement

For the purposes of Squad Movement, a Squad Plate is treated very much like a single unit. Its Move rating and abilities are limited to those of its Squad's slowest and least able members. A Squad runs as fast as its worst runner, jumps as high as its worst jumper, climbs as fast as its worst climber, and so forth.

A Squad's travel is measured by the movement of its Standard – a Move of 5” means the Standard can travel five inches over the course of the turn, regardless of whatever twists and spins the Squad Plate may perform underneath it.


Obstacles
The main difference between moving a Squad and moving one of its members is that a Squad Plate is naturally much larger, and doesn’t move as easily through confined spaces as an individual unit might. Doorways, corridors, stairs, and terrain obstacles may be too constricted for the full width of a Squad Plate to fit through; the Squad will need to either split up or find other ways around the obstacles in order to proceed. Players should try to optimize their Squad sizes for the environments they expect to operate in – room-to-room combat favors much tinier groups than battles across an open plain.

Example: Rough Terrain
Example: Squads can deal with rough terrain like this in two ways: they can remain in formation and sacrifice a few Movement inches to climb over the rubble, or they can break formation to thread through individually and spend an Action to form back up afterwards.

When there's an Officer in the group, the choice is a lot easier - breaking and reforming is free.
The curse of Mega
An Officer leads his Squad out of a cursed temple.
Elements shown: LEGO, Mega Bloks, Little Armory

A Squad Plate is also restricted by the fact that it can’t stop half-way into a maneuver, or at any spot not large enough for the whole Squad to stand. For example, a Squad climbing over a wall must have enough Move to get the entire Squad Plate to the other side; it can’t end the turn while only partway over. The Squad may have to wait at the base of the wall for its full Move to reset at the beginning of the next turn (if that would be enough to get it over the wall), or it may have to split up and allow its members can climb over the wall individually.

Note that even if the Squad has enough Move to make it over the wall, enemies may be able to interrupt with Response Actions and prevent the Squad from doing so. If the Squad’s Movement is disrupted in any way that prevents it from clearing an obstacle by the end of its Move, the Squad is Rebuffed and must either break Formation or return to its last legal position.


Infantry and Cavalry Squads
The art of the pivot
Cavalry Squads can't zig-zag left and right the way an Infantry Squad can. They have to wheel around their Squad Plate's front corners in order to turn.
Elements shown: LEGO, Red Bean Studios
““There are not enough Indians in the world to defeat the Seventh Cavalry.”
- General George Armstrong Custer

Squads are divided into two types, depending on their composition. A Squad composed entirely of minifigs, or of units that can move like minifigs (animals, some robots, humanoid aliens), is called an Infantry Squad. An Infantry Squad is treated in much the same way as a regular minifig – it can instantly face in any direction, or run, jump, climb, and swim in a minifig’s standard fashion.

Any Squad that contains vehicles (chariots, pirate ships, starfighters), ridden animals (horses, dragons, giant spiders), or any other unit or device that is directed or operated by another unit (catapults, undead slaves, artillery pieces), is a Cavalry Squad. A Cavalry Squad’s abilities are determined by those of its Squad members as usual, but with two further restrictions:

Cavalry units can’t turn as quickly as Infantry can. When turning, a Cavalry Squad Pivots around one of its Squad Plate's front corners. The smaller the Squad Plate, the more tightly the Squad can turn.
Cavalry units in Formation can’t sidestep or pull other such lateral maneuvers. A Cavalry Squad can only move or turn in the direction it is facing, or backwards at half speed. A Squad of Cavalry butted up against a wall may have to break Formation in order to get itself turned around.



8.4: Squad Action

Like individual minifigs, Squads are allowed one Action per turn. Some Actions will involve only one or a portion of the Squad’s members, but most will involve them all. Any regular Action is possible, as long as there's not a specific Squad member preventing it - a Squad of minifigs could use their Action to Sprint, for instance, but it won't do them any good if the Squad also includes a creeping Combat Snail slowing them down.

If some Squad members don’t participate in the Squad's Action, their individual Actions are wasted - the Squad doesn’t get to take a second Action to give the unused units something to do. If those members want to use their individual Actions for something other than the main Squad’s Action for the turn, they’ll have to split away from the Squad.

Even if they're not identical, attacks that are similar enough can be grouped into a single Squad Action. A Squad can declare a general Close Combat attack even if some units are using paired sabers and others are swinging battleaxes. Similarly, a Squad making a Ranged Attack might have some units firing blowguns and others throwing knives. This is perfectly legal. Dissimilar attack types cannot be combined: a Squad of spearmen can’t have half its members using their spears to Charge while the other half throws theirs in a Ranged Attack.


All For One and One For All
When handling a Squad, the Squad Plate stands for all the units in the Squad. If the Squad Plate climbs over a wall, each of its members takes the Move penalty, even if the wall would realistically hamper only few. If a Squad Plate is hit by a truck, the Squad members can Brace (8.5: Squad Combat: Charge Attacks) to absorb the impact as a group, even if only a couple of Squaddies appear to be in the truck’s path. If a Squad’s standard is five inches from a target, then all the members make their Ranged Attacks from a distance of five inches, no matter where they stand in the formation. If a Squad enters into Close Combat with a target, then all of the members are engaged in Close Combat, even the ones standing far to the rear. In a Squad, what goes for one goes for all.

There are two main exceptions to this rule. The first is that Damage to a Squad can be distributed to individual members in uneven ways (8.5: Squad Combat). The second is that there’s a limit to how many Squad members can act on a single small object at the same time.

Touch Limitations
If a Squad or Squad Plate is touching an object, then any single Squad member can be considered to be touching that object, no matter where in the formation he is standing. But some objects are too small for large numbers of Squaddies to handle during a single turn. No more than three Squad members can touch a minifig or 2x4-sized object, no more than two can touch a 2x2-sized object, and only one can touch a 1x1-sized object in a single turn. (Note that these are the same size distinctions used for Attack Modifiers for Target Size (5.1: Making Attacks).)

If units need to touch an object in order to make a specific Action, then the number of Squad members able to take that Action may be limited. This is especially important in Close Combat and Charge attacks, where it puts a limit on the number of hits a target minifig can take in a single round of combat.

Players are free to argue other cases as they become necessary – how many minifigs can attack a hot dog stand at once, for instance? – but in most cases the point will be moot. If there are enough minifigs making successful Attack Rolls that the question comes up, then the hot dog stand is probably toast regardless.



8.5: Squad Combat

Attacking with Squads is much like any attack with multiple units (5.1: Making Attacks: Combined Attacks). Attack Rolls are combined into a single toss of a giant pile of dice, the successful rolls are counted up, and the resulting Damage is combined in a similarly massive roll. The larger the Squads you have in play, the more dice you’ll need; in fact, the number of dice available will often make a good practical limit for the size of the Squads you’ll want to field.

The limitation on Squad attacks is that, because a Squad is limited to one Squad Action in a given turn, all of the Squaddies’ attacks must be of the same basic type. While they might not all use the exact same weapons, the Squad has to decide between making a Ranged, Hand to Hand, or Charge Attack for their turn. Squaddies unable or unwilling to participate in the chosen type of attack take no Action that turn, and just hang around uselessly while their Squadmates get the real work done.

Although a Squad is limited to a single type of attack for its own members, it may still attack cooperatively with other Squads or units using different types of attacks, as usual.


Ranged Attacks
(5.3: Ranged Combat)
A Squad making a Ranged Attack is largely the same as any regular group of units engaging in Combined Fire (5.1: Making Attacks: Combined Attacks). For expediency’s sake, rather than measuring Range for each Squaddie individually, the Range for the entire Squad is measured as the distance from the Squad’s Standard to the target.

When ready to fire, roll all the Squaddies’ Attack Rolls at once. Count the number of hits, and roll all the resulting Damage Rolls at once. The target takes the entire sum of combined damage; hopefully this will be enough to reduce it to a fine plastic mist. After the effects of the combined damage have been resolved, any missed shots that may have come up in the Attack Rolls can be handled separately (5.3: Ranged Combat: Missed Shots), if players decide they're important.

Example: A Mixed Attack

Example: A whole platoon of Death Marines has combined into a single Squad for efficient management on a mission to secure provisions. The mega-Squad contains two dozen grunts armed with Pistols (Short-Ranged Weapons, Use:3 Dmg:1d6), a dozen snipers with Rifles (Long-Ranged Weapons, Use:3 Dmg 1d6+1), and three mobile Artillery units (Use:4, Dmg: 1d10).

Since the hastily-assembled Squad has no Standard, the player estimates the center of the Squad Plate as best as he can and measures the Attack Range from that point - the target is four inches away. This places him within the Weapon Range of everyone in the Squad, so they'll all get to attack.

Although their weapons have the same Use ratings, the player makes separate Attack Rolls for the grunts and snipers, since their attacks do different amounts of damage. Rolling twenty-four Skill dice for the grunts, eighteen meet the weapons' Use requirement of 3 or better; out of twelve dice for the snipers, five are hits. Only one of the Artillery pieces hits on its Use rating of 4.

The resulting damage is eighteen hits of 1d6 from the grunts, five of 1d6+1 from the snipers, and one hit of 1d10 from the Artillery, for a total of twenty-three d6es and one d10 plus five. The player loads the appropriate amount of dice into a bucket (there are too many to fit in his hand), shakes them up, and rolls them into an empty tray.

Adding the dice together, the total Damage comes to ninety-eight points (the player elects to forego the option of rolling additional Critical Success dice or tracking any Missed Shots). This is more than enough to overcome the Armor rating of the Squad's target. The fast-food cashier who refused to serve them any lunch-menu items before eleven is reduced to a cloud of reddish particulate matter. The players may now refer to the Overkill rules (7.5: Taking Damage) to determine if any of the kitchen equipment behind him survives.


Hand to Hand Attacks
(5.2: Close Combat)
As with minifigs, a Squad’s melee attack may be as simple as jumping an Angry Inch and doing a dice-pile’s worth of standard Ganging-Up Damage to an unresponsive target (5.1: Making Attacks: Combined Attacks). But if the target fights back, then the Squad is entered into Squad Close Combat, and subject to the standard rules of Close Combat Maneuvers.

Squad Close Combat
Close Combat for Squads works the same way as for regular units, except that a Squad’s Attack is the combined Attacks of all its members, and the Counter of a defending Squad is the combined Counters of its members. If the Squad makes a second Attack, it’s the combination of all its Squaddies' second Attacks, and the defender's second Counter is the combination of its Squaddies' second Counters, according to how many units in each group have a second hand weapon and are still alive to use it.

In Squad Close Combat, each Attack and Counter involves a full pile of dice, as all of each Squad's members roll in unison for each step and remove casualties afterwards. Squad members must act uniformly – if one Squaddie attacks with two weapons, all his mates able to do so must follow suit. The defending squad, similarly, can’t have some members Parry while others Counterattack – it chooses one Counter for all its members and sticks to it for that step. Parried damage is distributed among the parrying defenders in exactly the same way as regular damage (8.6: Taking Damage).

Engagement
In order to use the full strength of all Squad members in Close Combat, a Squad must fully Engage with its enemies by bringing its Squad Plate into contact with the target. Once Engaged, all members of the Squad may make Close Combat Attacks (and Counters) against that opponent, regardless of where in the Formation they’re standing.

Although in real life the units remain neatly arranged on their Squad Plates, in game terms a Squad that Engages a target in Close Combat is considered to be all mixed up with that enemy. If either the Squad or the enemy is hit by Ranged Attacks or other non-Close Combat Damage, then the Damage is distributed equally between both of them. The first hit goes to the intended target, and further consecutive hits alternate between the sides afterwards. The alternation may be interrupted if necessary to ensure that no unit among the group of potential targets takes a second hit before all of the targets have taken their first.

Multiple Squads and units can Engage with the same target, and multiple targets can Engage back, sometimes creating a long chain of Engagements called an Engagement Ring. The chain of Engagements can only connect through direct Close Combat – a Squad can’t connect to the Ring by trying to Engage with another friendly Squad, or by brushing up against an enemy Squad but not attacking them.

All Squads and units in an Engagement Ring are treated as one giant Close Combat, regardless of how far one end of the Ring is from the other. That is, all attackers across the Ring attack as one group, and all defenders across the ring Counter as one group, rather than fighting in a number of separate engagements.

Example: An Engagement Ring

Example: Tybalt and Mercutio, each armed with rapiers, are fighting in Close Combat. Seeing this, Romeo leaps in to help his friend, attacking Tybalt with a rapier of his own. Two against one seems mighty unfair to a Capulet Squad of swordsmen, who attack Romeo at once. A passing Squad of Montague swordsmen immediately intercede, Engaging with the Capulet Squad in response. The result of all this aggression is a single large Engagement Ring, with Tybalt and the Capulets on one side, and Romeo, Mercutio, and the Montagues on the other.

Once the dust has settled and all the Montagues lie dead, Tybalt wipes the blood off his rapier and sets off to find his cousin Juliet to boast about his amazing swordsmanship.


Two-Handed Weapons and Skirmishing
If a Squad attacks without first being Engaged, then Formation matters a lot more – only the Squaddies who can physically strike the target with a weapon from where they’re standing can participate in the attack. This type of limited attack is called Skirmishing, and is usually the best choice for Squads of pikemen or other troops with long Two-Handed Weapons. A Squad can jump back and forth between Skirmishing and full Engagement as a part of Close Combat, depending on how they use their Angry Inch to maneuver around.

Two-Handed Weapons require a lot of room to swing. For a Squad that's Engaged with an enemy in Close Combat, that's room that the troops don't have. With Two-Handed Weapons, the Squad will have to use its Angry Inch to leap backwards and give themselves room to swing their weapons in a Skirmishing Attack. If the Squad is unable or unwilling to Disengage, the units with Two-Handed Weapons are limited to using them to Shove or Parry only.

Numerical Advantage
Remember that individual minifigs within a Squad can be struck by no more than three Close Combat attackers at once (although each of those attackers might hit multiple times, if they have more than one weapon). Any further hits in excess of this number are wasted. However, the attacker should still roll Damage for all hits, even the excess ones, since he’s free to pick and choose the strongest results when deciding which hits to keep and which to discard.

Charge Attacks
(7.6: Creation Combat)
Charging with an Infantry Squad (8.3: Squad Movement: Infantry and Cavalry Squads) is pretty simple - the Squad's effective Momentum is the sum of the Momentums of all its units, and the Charge is handled as normal. A large Squad can Knock Back and Plow Through smaller obstacles exactly the way a large Creation might.

A Cavalry Squad is much less maneuverable, and their Formation becomes much more important. When calculating Momentum and Damage for a Cavalry Charge, only the units in the front row of the Formation are counted, and of those, only those whose path will actually carry them into the target. The rest of the units are unable to participate, and are primarily along to provide moral support and to help resist against KnockBack Damage.

Bracing
When a Squad is the target of a Charge, it has two options - either the the Squad members receive the Charge as a collection of individual targets, according to their physical placement on the Squad Plate, or they unite together like a rugby scrum and Brace for Impact. When a Squad Braces against a Charge, the entire Squad resists as a unified force, combining the members' Physical Opposition and counterattacks with Charging Weapons.

Bracing for Impact costs the Squad an Action, and they remain Braced against all further Charges that turn. As long as they have the ability to Brace together in the first place, a Squad that makes a Charge Attack is automatically Braced for the rest of the turn.

If a Braced Squad is Knocked Back, then the KnockBack is applied to the entire Squad Plate, making them much more difficult to Knock Over. If the collision is strong enough to knock over the entire Squad, then the Squad's Formation is broken completely and all its units are Disrupted.

If a Squad is unable or unwilling to Brace itself, then all the units are treated as separate targets to be Plowed Through, which means that individual members are much more susceptible to Damage and KnockBack, but others might escape getting hit entirely. Units that are Knocked Back far enough to land outside of the Squad Plate are considered to have left the Squad, however involuntarily.



8.6: Taking Damage


Targeting A Squad
One of the biggest advantages of forming a Squad is that it makes it much harder for enemies to focus Damage on any single unit. The drawback is that targeting a Squad as a whole is much easier than targenting individuals - as long as an attacker can target any unit or object within the Squad, or even the Squad Plate itself, it can make an Attack on the Squad. Furthermore, since Squad Plates are generally larger than minifigs, opponents making Ranged or Charge Attacks on the Squad will usually get an Attack Bonus for Large Target Area (5.1: Making Attacks: Attack Modifiers). (Close Combat Attacks are still based on the Size of the individual units within the Squad, however.)

There is an exception to this rule: an attacker can Single Out a specific unit within a Squad as long as the target unit is at least twice the attacking unit's Size. Targets any smaller than that are too difficult to distinguish in the chaos of battle. A Rat (Size 0) could Single Out a Peasant (Size 1) in a Peasant Squad; the Peasant could Single Out a Squad-bound mounted Knight (Size 2); and the Knight could Single Out an individual Giant of Size 4. Otherwise, Damage done to a Squad is distributed among its members according to the defending player's preference.


Distributing Damage
Single Attacks
Whenever a Squad takes Damage from a single attack, the Squad's player may assign the Damage to any single unit within the Squad he wishes. It's customary to choose a unit who could "reasonably" have been struck by the attack - a bruiser using brass knuckles to take a swing at a Squad from one side isn't likely to see the punch land on some guy at the far opposite end, for instance - but a great deal of fudging is allowed in this regard. Squad members are well-known for making crazy leaps in order to take bullets for each other; you might take that Squaddie from the far end, place him on the near side to receive the punch, and claim that he jumped to the rescue just in the nick of time.

Secondary Effects
When the Damage is of a type that has additional location-based effects afterwards, such as when an Explosion is set off, or a massive laser blast has enough Overkill to burn through a whole line of targets, it's less acceptable to be moving units around when distributing the damage. The player may still choose whichever unit he wishes for the initial impact (once again, trying to make a "reasonable" selection if he has any sportsmanship at all), and the side effects then proceed as normal based on wherever that impact occurred and the arrangement of the Formation of units around it.

Multiple Attacks
There are many instances in which a Squad might be hit by multiple attacks at once - the collected attacks from an enemy Squad, a group of enemy units attacking in cooperation, the concentrated firepower of a multi-payload weapons platform, or any combination of the above. The Damage from these attacks is distributed in sequence among the Squad members, chosen by the defending player according to certain rules.

Rather than assigning Damage as he goes along, the attacking player just rolls all the Damage Rolls at once, separating and arranging them by total Damage in order from greatest to least.

Starting with the largest and proceeding in order, the defending player assigns the Damage Rolls to each member of the Squad until every Squaddie has taken a hit. If any Squaddies survive and there's still more Damage to deal out, the process is repeated on the survivors until there's either no more Damage Rolls or no more Squaddies. All Squad members must take one hit before any one of the survivors can take a second. All Damage Rolls are cumulative, and Squaddies are removed from the rotation as soon as the Damage is enough to kill them.

The defending player may choose his stricken Squad members in any order, but if there's enough Damage to go around multiple times, he should do his best to keep to the same order with each new round.

Multiple Attacks with Secondary Effects
If the defending Squad is unlucky enough to get hit by multiple secondary-effect attacks at the same time, get the complicated stuff out of the way first. Handle all Explosions first, all attacks with potential Overkill Damage second, and all normal types of Damage third. In each case, handle all the attacks, ordered from most to least powerful, before moving on to the next Damage type.
7: Special Creations
Navigation Bar Legal Disclaimer The BrikWars Universe QuikWars! 1: Gameplay 2: The Mighty Minifig 3: Minifig Weapons 4: The Player Turn 5: Combat 6: Minifig Heroes H: The Horse 7: Special Creations 8: Squads
(End of Book)